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Author: chiwawa

Joined: 5/1/2012
Posts: 1
GCT Trips Taken: 6
OAT Trips Taken: 6
Traveler Since: 2003

May 01, 2012

We just returned from an amazing trip to Tuscany & Italian Riviera.  This is the first trip we made without our Debit Card.  Big mistake...it is almost impossible to change dollars to Euro in the first few days of the trip.  Money exchange places are few and far between.  Seems like ATM's are readily available but banks and hotels don't or won't do it. We had to borrow Euros from our guide until we could fine a place to exchange.  Sure was worth it tho...what a great trip!

Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 425
GCT Trips Taken: 10
OAT Trips Taken: 0
Traveler Since: 2002

May 01, 2012

Sorry for your difficulties but happy you had a good tour. Your advice is well siad and very important. For travels to Europe (and, I suspect but do not know for sure) other continents as well, one needs a Debit (or ATM) card and one or more credit cards, either Visa or MasterCard. And at least one of the credit cards should provide the capability to withdraw funds from an ATM machine. Granted, the cost of cash withdrawals using a credit card is much greater than using a debit card, but it is a good backup.

You did not say why you went on the trip without a debit card, but your story should be a signal to GCT to strengthen the "suggestions" in their literature. Clients should be warned even more emphatically that currency exchange is difficult and costly. Use of ATMs should be emphasized.

Thank you for bringing this important subject to the fore.

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